Am I Not a Citizen? Barbarism, Civic Awakening, and the City




The 13th Istanbul Biennial’s film program

March-April 2013

Co-curated with Yael Messer



The 13th Istanbul Biennial Film Programme features:

C’est Une Hek | Joost Conijn, The Netherlands, Morocco (1997)
Chronique d’un Été (Chronicle of a Summer)| Jean Rouch and Edgar Morin, France (1960)
Dammi I Colori | Anri Sala, Albania (2003)
En Construcción (Work in Progress) | José Luis Guerín, Spain (2001)
Touche Pas À la Femme Blance (Don't Touch the White Woman) | Marco Ferreri, France, Italy (1974)
El Angel Exterminador (Exterminating Angel) | Luis Buñuel, Spain - Mexico (1962)
Gravity Hill Newsreel No.5 | Jem Cohen, USA (2011)
Tomorrow | Andrey Gryazev, Russia (2012)
Oh, Beautiful Istanbul | Atıf Yılmaz, Turkey (1966)
Secta | Egle Budvytyte, The Netherlands (2006)
Włosy (Hair) | Agnieszka Polska, Poland (2012)
Spoils - Extraordinary Harvest | Alex Mallis, USA (2011)
California Dreaming | Bregtje van der Haak, The Netherlands (2010)
Squeeze | Mika Rottenberg, USA (2010)
The Take | Avi Lewis, Canada (2004)
The Tower: A Songspiel | Chto Delat (What Is To Be Done?), Russia (2010)
Ausländer Raus! Schlingensiefs Container (Foreigners out! Schlingensiefs Container)| Paul Poet, Austria (2002)






The 13th Istanbul Biennial’s film programme Am I Not a Citizen? Barbarism, Civic Awakening, and the City is a collaboration between theIstanbul Biennial and the Istanbul Film Festival. As part of the 32nd Istanbul Film Festival, the programme serves as a prelude to the biennial exhibition, and aims to incite reflections on the overarching theme of the biennial; the public domain as a political public forum.


The programme brings together documentaries, feature films, and video art works tackling themes of citizenship, the public domain, democracy, and art. It features canonical films, as well as recent documentaries, and focuses on the poetics of politics through video works.


Artists, directors and filmmakers offer viewers a platform to contemplate the public domain as a site of cultural, social and political engagement and insurrection. They propose new alternatives, collective imagination, self-organisation, and co-production. Among the films in Am I Not a Citizen? are proposals for different economic models, sketches for building an utopia, and exercises in civic imagination.


Am I Not a Citizen? Barbarism, Civic Awakening and the City features 17 films and video art works with diverse cinematic practices that question the limits of civilization in our day and age. It focuses on the destabilizing force of this current system and diverse responses through which notions of barbarism, activism, and civic participation are redefined.


Curators: Fulya Erdemci, Yael Messer and Gilad Reich
Assistant curator: Ece Üçoluk

Additional information:
The 13th Istanbul Biennial’s webside